The Dutchman grew frustrated with his opponent’s going to ground too easily and ended up mimicking their efforts to feign injury.
Erik ten Hag admits he expected more from Ryan Babel following the winger let his frustration get the better of him Ajax’s 2-0 loss to Getafe in Thursday’s Europa League tie.
Last year’s Champions League semi-finalists Ajax named a strong side that included Donny van de Beek, Dusan Tadic and fresh Chelsea signing Hakim Ziyech but registered just two shots, neither of these on goal.
The last-32 first leg was temporarily halted after Deyverson seemed to be struck by an object thrown from the away end when observing Getafe’s deserved opener.
And Kenedy resisted Ajax’s distress with a deflected shot in the end of a feisty affair.
Babel was one of three visiting players booked after grabbing Allan Nyom using a stray arm, before comically mocking his opponent’s theatrical response by rolling on the ground and then mimicking the Getafe participant’s limp.
Ten Hag contested Babel’s actions, and the Netherlands global himself confessed he should have kept his cool.
“It wasn’t intelligent. I don’t expect that from a seasoned player,” Ten Hag said at his post-match news conference.
“You will need to keep calm and use your head. You need to pay attention to your work, playing soccer.”
Babel, talking to FOX Sports, stated:”I do not know if I’d do it again. I discovered that the referee was duped by the competition at crucial moments. I was done with that.
“I thought the competition was exaggerating a lot, so I got a yellow card.
“Sometimes, we played well, but it was not good enough. We’ve got a lot to analyse. Hopefully we can make it up to the fans.”
Getafe – third in La Liga – defeated Ajax as the ball spent only 42 minutes and 36 seconds in drama – the second-shortest amount of time at a Europa League game because 2009.
“There has been a whole lot of teams that dropped here,” Ten Hag added. “We all know we can do better, we revealed that in the last phase of the game.
“The simple fact is that you can not make mistakes at this level. If that’s the case, your opponent gets the better of you – particularly this particular opponent.
“We gave them what they were searching for, and we understand that, also. We are experienced enough to realise that, but you want to be patient and wait for critical moments.”